Mobility Portal, Spain
Date: February 23, 2024
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By Mobility Portal

Mercedes-Benz delays its electrification goal by 5 years: It would continue improving its combustion engine models

This way, Mercedes-Benz becomes the latest car manufacturer to indicate a weaker appetite than expected for battery-powered vehicles. Apparently, the investment in capacity and technology development has outpaced the actual demand for EVs.
Mercedes Benz - Electric vehicles

Mercedes-Benz delayed its electrification target by five years and assured investors that it would continue to enhance its combustion engine models, becoming the latest carmaker to signal a weaker-than-expected appetite for battery-powered units.

The company now expects electrified vehicle sales, including hybrids, to account for up to 50 per cent of the total by 2030, five years later than its 2021 forecast, when it aimed to reach the 50 per cent milestone by 2025 with mostly fully EVs.

While carmakers and suppliers are betting heavily on future EV demand, investment in capacity and technology development has outstripped actual EV demand, leading carmakers to readjust production plans.

Ola Kaellenius, Chief Executive Officer at Mercedes-Benz, warned late last year that even in Europe, sales likely wouldn’t be fully electric by 2030, as battery-powered cars currently represent only eleven per cent of total sales, and 19 per cent including hybrids.

Kaellenius said customers and investors should know that the company was well-positioned to continue producing combustion engine cars and was ready to upgrade technology well into the next decade.

Current upgrade plans mean “it’s almost as if we have a new lineup in 2027 that will take us well into the 2030s,” Kaellenius said.

The luxury carmaker’s shares rose 5.9 per cent on the news, also supported by a 3 billion euros share buyback program announced late Wednesday.

Read more: eMobility sector confirms: Germany is prepared to continue the transition without subsidies

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